Is it spring yet? Geez I can’t take these gloomy doomy rainy Seattle days any longer – 9 months of winter is just TOO much! But since I am trying not to be such a complainer I have found a way to crack myself up every morning by feeding my dogs their vitamins (yep my dogs get vitamins) with Peanut butter. I am sure you have seen what happens when you put peanut butter on a dogs tongue…it cracks me up every time I do that and the day immediately looks brighter – if you have a dog you should try it, it will make your day!
What also made my day is this young lady – Happy Birthday Tina – I hope you are having a great day and enjoyed our yummy birthday dinner and drinks at Cantinetta – why didn’t I take photos of those Nutella Doughnuts – they were to die for! And as always a Thank you goes out to our star photographer Christy who never wants to be on the photos!
Thank god the first signs of spring are here: my raspberries are sprouting nicely and I have even found long lost friends like the Rhubarb I planted a couple years ago and that never came in now looks like its trying to make a comeback as well as some onions I planted but never go around to harvest. And then there is this “velvety” plant (see photo bottom row (the one in the middle)) and I have NO clue what that could be, so it will be a surprise harvest in summer. Or maybe I will be cracking myself up in a couple months when it turns out to be one huge ugly weed that I kept pampering only because I couldn’t identify it as a weed, that would be so me Miss City gardener.
With color finally coming into the yard I felt like I needed to cook something with color to get into my tummy – Asian comes to mind. This is the first time I made Sweet and Sour Pork at home and it was delish.
- 3/4 – 1 pound boneless pork loin, sliced 1/2-inch thick into squares
- 3 teaspoons of soy sauce
- 1 teaspoon corn starch
- 1/4 cup sugar
- 2 tablespoons ketchup
- 2 tablespoons dark soy sauce
- 1 cup water
- 1/3rd cup vinegar
- 2 tablespoons sweet Chili Sauce
- 1 package of Kikkoman Sweet and Sour Sauce mixture (you can find it in the Asian section, its a small seasoning package)
- 1 tablespoon cornstarch dissolved in 4 tablespoons water
- 1/3 cup flour
- 1/3 cup cornstarch
- 1 egg white, lightly beaten
- 1 tablespoon vegetable oil
- 1/3 cup warm water, as needed
- 1/2 onion cut into squares
- 1/2 red bell pepper
- 1/2 green bell pepper
- 1/2 cup pineapple chunks
- 3 cups oil for deep-frying, or as needed
- 1-2 cups of cooked rice
- Cut the pork into 1-inch cubes. Season with pepper and marinate in the soy sauce and cornstarch for 20 minutes.
- To prepare the sauce, in a small bowl, combine the sugar, ketchup, dark soy sauce, water, vinegar, sweet chili sauce and Asian style Sweet and Sour Seasoning mix. Set aside. In a separate bowl, dissolve the cornstarch in the water. Set aside.
- Peel the onion and cut into small squares. Cut the bell peppers in half, remove the seeds and cut into cubes.
- Heat the oil for deep–frying to 375 degrees Fahrenheit.
- For the batter, combine the flour and cornstarch. Stir in the egg white and vegetable oil. Add as much of the warm water as is needed to form a thick batter that is neither too dry or too moist. (The batter should not be runny, but should drop off the back of a spoon). I used the entire 1/3 cup of water.
- Dip the marinated pork cubes in the batter (I actually dumped the entire meat into the batter and coated the meat with the batter. It will be a thin layer of batter. If you want a more your meat coated with a lot of batter, then double the batter recipe and dip each piece individually and make as much batter stick as possible. I tried that out for a few pieces and fried them up but that was way too much batter for me and it takes too long ;-), I like the meat to be crisp and not super doughy.
- While you are deep frying the meat bring the sauce you prepared to a boil in a small saucepan over medium heat and add the onion, peppers, and pineapple. Bring to a boil, thicken with the cornstarch. Taste the sauce and adjust the seasoning , adding salt or vinegar or more water or sweet chili sauce if desired.
- Deep fry the meat in 2 batches, taking care not to overcrowd the wok/pan. Deep-fry the pork until it is golden brown (approx. 8-10 minutes). Remove and drain on paper towels. Keep warm in the oven (preheat the oven to 120 degrees). Lots of recipes suggest to deep fry the pork and then put it into the sauce and cook for 10 more minutes. I keep the meat separate from the sauce to make sure it stays crispy, but if you don’t care if crispy or not, you can combine the fried pork and sauce and keep it warm that way. One y
- Serve the sweet and sour pork over rice.